It is no secret that the Pittsburgh Pirates offense has been struggling as of late. One day after being blanked by the Detroit Tigers, they returned to Comerica Park to wrap up a short two game series. On this day Pittsburgh would being their bats to the ball park and shutout Detroit 8-0 to earn a series split. They also got a solid pitching performance from Rich Hill and the bullpen to compliment the offensive output.
Austin Hedges got things started in the second inning when he doubled off Tigers CF Matt Vierling’s glove to drive home Ji Hwan Bae and Rodolfo Castro. Castro would then smack a solo home run 397 ft. two innings later. In the fifth Andrew McCutchen would single to left bringing in Bryan Reynolds to put the good guys up four runs.
A four run seventh inning put this game away for good. Carlos Santana got things started with a double to center to plate Reynolds. McCutchen then came in to score when Connor Joe singled to center. Castro grabbed another RBI when he singled to right center. The final run of the day came when Hedges singled to center to bring in Joe.
Hill would grab his fourth win of the season after pitching six innings. He would allow one hit, to go with seven strikeouts and two walks. Robert Stephenson struck out two and walked one during his time on the bump in the seventh. The eighth inning belonged to Jose Hernandez, who would strike out two batters during that time. Dauri Moreta came on in the ninth and struck out all three batters he faced.
Detroit would send Eduardo Rodriguez out for five innings of work. He allowed four runs on six hits with five strikeouts and two walks. Tyler Alexander came in and pitched the next 1.1 innings. He struck out one batter, while allowing four runs, two earned, and six hits. Jose Cisnero collected the final two outs seventh and allowed a hit during that time. The eighth and ninth belonged to Tyler Holton. Holton struck out three and gave up one hit.
This was a much-needed win for the Pirates this afternoon. If the offense can once again show consistent signs of life, with the strong starting pitching they have had of late, then this team should be able to get back to playing good baseball like they did in April. Pittsburgh will have a day off Thursday before returning to PNC Park on Friday to begin a three-game series with the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Record vs. Tigers: 1-1
Record vs. American League: 8-12
Record on the Road: 13-11
Overall Record: 23-20
Let’s Go Bucs!